Knowledge Center

Situation Room

Property Managers Can No Longer Afford to Ignore Millennials—and What That Means

Try as you may, but Millennials can no longer be overlooked. They’re the nation’s fastest-growing demographic, and a demographic already 71 million people strong. It’s become increasingly evident that in order to be successful, owners and property managers need to understand and respond to the needs of this generation.

By the Numbers

Baby Boomers may be the largest demographic today, but they’re losing pace with Millennials. In 2019, for the first time, there will be more Millennials than Boomers.Millennials () are entering the stage in life where, as young adults, they begin to form independent households. The share of Millennials in their 20s living on their own will rise from one in seven to one in two. There are roughly 45 million Millennials in their 20s today, which has proven a large driver of rental demand. Older Millennials, those who are now entering their 30s, were initially slow to form new households. They came of age during the recession and, as a result, often lived with parents or grandparents. Those Millennials have since aged and have begun to live independently. Millennials aged 30 and above have formed 10 million new renter households over the past decade alone. “The overhang of the recession, high student debt levels, limited new construction of starter homes, and the ongoing rise in home prices present constraints for young would-be buyers,” notes a recent study by the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University. The report projects continued growth in renter households over the next 20 years, driven primarily by Millennials in their 20s and 30s. And Millennials aren’t just renting – they’re spending a lot of money on rent.Recent studies show that Millennials are spending more on rent than generations past. Millennials now spend $93,000 in rent, on average, by the time they turn 30. Gen X paid just over $82,000 and Baby Boomers spent just $71,000 when adjusted for inflation.These numbers are expected to climb. Already, younger Millennials are spending over $97,000 on rent by the time they turn 30, and Gen Z is expected to spend more than $102,000 by the time they reach 30.And it should come as no surprise that Millennials who are dropping that kind of cash on rent will want a premium rental experience. So, how do landlords and property managers respond? It starts with understanding what Millennials want out of their renting experience. Only then can you effectively respond to capture the Millennial market demand.

Appealing to Millennials

Millennials are the first generation to grow up with technology at their fingertips. They grew up with computers in their homes, and were the first generation to own cell phones en masse. Their affinity for technology does, and will continue to, influence how Millennials do business – as renters, property owners and employees.Property management companies are still trying to understand what this means. Right now, the average property manager is 47 years old. They often don’t see eye-to-eye with Millennials, or understand their mindset. It’s becoming abundantly clear that the property management industry will need to attract new talent and better integrate new technology if it’s going to respond to Millennial demands.We’re starting to see this play out, albeit slowly. Most property management companies are hesitant to adopt new technology. Typically, the status quo prevails.But it doesn’t need to be that way. Change is good. And as the renter demographic changes, the property management industry needs to grow and adapt as well. Like it or not, technology will be the locus of these changes.

What Millennials Want

Millennials are an incredibly diverse demographic. After all, there’s a reason why Millennials have been dubbed the “snowflake” generation – no two are exactly alike.That said, in my experience, first as CEO of Starwood Waypoint Homes and now as co-founder of Mynd, a tech-enabled property management company, there are several parallels among Millennials that property managers can respond to. Let’s look at a few.

  • Millennials value mobile and electronic communication. Traditional communication isn’t sufficient. Nowadays, Millennials want their property management company to use omni-channel communication. Companies need to build a customer service platform that allows property managers to communicate however the resident prefers: by text, phone, email, maybe even via social media.

A platform that facilitates omni-channel communication is also beneficial for property owners. These platforms can track management response times, resolution times, and customer satisfaction. It’s similar to the technology that’s being deployed in the SAAS industry, but that has been slow to take root in the property management industry to date.

  • Millennials have demanded an easier leasing experience. Millennials grew up with helicopter-parents who shuttled them from practice to practice, to school, to practice, to soccer game to dance recital to SAT prep classes. Millennials are used to a high-paced lifestyle and seek instant gratification. Property managers need to respond accordingly.

And there are several ways they can.At both Waypoint and Mynd, we’ve created an easier leasing experience through the use of technology like smart locks and 3D tours. This allows us to host self-showings, where prospective tenants can actually get in and tour a unit on their own time. We’ve built out a mobile app that then facilitates lease applications, lease executions, and lease renewals. We’ve turned the leasing process on its head, primarily in response to Millennials’ demand for a more convenient leasing experience.

  • Millennials love online everything. For better or worse, Millennials often like to avoid face-to-face communication. Some don’t even feel comfortable picking up the phone to call their landlord with a repair or maintenance request. We’ve responded by creating a resident app that allows tenants to do everything from pay their bills online to submit work orders to management. With the click of a button, residents can upload photos and videos to help describe their repair and maintenance issue. This allows property managers to more accurately diagnose the issue, and as a result, resolve the issue in less time.
  • Millennials are an experience-oriented generation. Unlike generations past, Millennials don’t look at their apartments as just a place to live. They look at where they live as part of an overarching lifestyle. As a result, they’re willing to pay a premium to live in buildings with curated activities and experiences. Naturally, this is easier to achieve in larger apartment complexes.

But that doesn’t mean property managers can’t facilitate experiences for tenants in smaller properties.We’re starting to see forward-thinking property managers arrange group deals with local businesses in order to provide residents with discounts on things like pizza, dry cleaning and theatre tickets. As property management companies scale, they can create bundled discounts on things like furniture, cable and internet. Sure, it may not be the same as having a monthly wine and cheese night at the roof deck pool, but these are amenities that add value for renters who increasingly pay an exorbitant share of their monthly income on rent.Responding to Millennial wants and needs isn’t just important for tenant attraction. It’s also important for finding highly-qualified tenants. We’ve deployed this approach at Mynd and we’ve had zero delinquencies and zero evictions to date with the residents that we placed with our proprietary tenant screening methodology.We’ve learned that this approach isn’t just good for owners – it’s good for residents, too. Residents love tech-enabled property management platforms.The Millennial population is about to explode. Owners who leverage an assortment of new technology will be well-positioned to capture this demographic, and capturing this demographic will be crucial. Owners who fail to get ahead of this wave will most certainly be left behind.

READ POST

What Should Sacramento Landlords Do If They're Caught in the Middle of an Emergency Situation?

What do you do if you own a rental property in Sacramento and you find yourself in the middle of an emergency situation? We’re exploring that with our local expert today, and helping investors understand how to respond to and handle an emergency when they have rental homes and residents to think about in Sacramento.

Communicate Proactively During Emergencies

Communicate proactively, especially with your residents. Don’t assume they know everything. Often when people are operating from a place of fear and reactive behaviors, a little extra communication can go a long way.Keep your residents in the loop. If the emergency is an electrical issue or a water issue, communicate with your residents in the building through email or mass texts. If you’re only working with one or two residents, make a phone call. Make sure they know what you’re doing to help. If there’s an active emergency and you’re living in a home that doesn’t have power, every minute can feel like an hour. So, get ahead of the curve as soon as possible. Treat your residents right and make them feel like you’re on it and taking care of them.

Establish Sacramento Emergency Protocols

Prior to an emergency happening, make sure you and your resident understand what an emergency actually is. At the property, we may think of emergencies as something that meets the standard of the housing code or our business model. Residents may have other ideas. So, put something consistent in place. For example, if a toilet isn’t working, that may not be an emergency in a property with three bathrooms, but it would be an emergency in a property with only one bathroom.Make sure your residents are empowered to mitigate the emergency as well. If the house is flooding, have your residents shut off the water valve if it’s safe. When you have water flooding the home, the first step you take isn’t necessary to call the landlord. Stop the flood first, and then make the call.There’s a pecking order. When your house is on fire, you call the fire department, not the landlord.

Expect After-Effects of Emergencies

Every emergency will take a lot of time and attention in the moment. But, you have to expect that it will kick up some downstream things, too. An illness, for example, will impact the economy as we are seeing right now. Be ready for the questions you’ll receive from your resident. You may need to change some collection protocols. If there’s a lockdown, you’ll need to make sure everyone in your building is safe. If there’s an earthquake and the water and power are shut off, you’ll need to work on relocation. Every emergency will come with its own set of circumstances, and those will lead to additional circumstances.Be consistent but flexible. There are fair housing and discrimination laws in place. So, if an emergency occurs and you decide to change the way you collect rent for one tenant who has lost a job, you’ll have to be prepared to offer the same consideration to your other tenants.There’s a lot of nuance. You need to be fair, but you also need to provide relief in each situation. It’s reasonable to hold the line on existing policies. But, if the government halts the enforcement of those policies, you will want to have your own playbook in place that addresses how you treat specific things.It’s very difficult to find a one-size-fits all approach. It depends on the severity and the rippling effect.

Sacramento Owners and Their Responsibilities to Residents

You have to be well-versed in the law and what your parameters are. Owners need to remember, however, that you are providing a shelter and a home for residents, and there’s a real responsibility that comes with that. Be prepared for difficult situations and tough conversations. You’re working with people during fearful and difficult times. Everyone is in reaction mode, and this presents you with an opportunity to be a good human and a compassionate person.You’re an investor and you’re running a business, but there are emotions running on the other side of that business. It’s not always numbers when one of your residents loses a job that has supported her family for 30 years. There are human beings behind every door you own. This is a customer service business, and sometimes emotions run high and things are said and done that aren’t logical. You have to remember that.This is a people business. Your business revolves around the people who are renting your property.Emotions will be a driving factor, which is why the communication we discussed at the beginning of this conversation is so important. Resources will slow down. Contractors and first responders will be swamped. Communities will need to rebuild.Make sure your residents know what’s going on. If someone says to you that you won’t have an update for two weeks, at least you have that expectation. If you’re not told anything, however, you’re going to feel the weight piling up more and more every day.Getting back to someone to say ‘I don’t have any information’ is still an answer. Ignoring them is not an answer.Don’t assume your residents know what’s going on, and don’t assume they’ve been through anything like this before. They may not have the confidence or peace of mind to navigate these emergency situations. Try to provide pieces of information that would make you feel helped if you were on the other side.If you’ve gone through a heavy flood before, dealing with a flood the second time is a lot more familiar. You’re more confident in your ability to get through it. But if you’ve never dealt with a flood before, the sight of running water in your house makes you fearful. It’s natural and expected.conAs the property owner, you need to be the cool head. People are feeling emotional. You want to be fair, and there are people’s lives at stake. Remember that.If you need any help with emergency planning or Sacramento property management, we invite you to contact our team at Mynd Property Management.You can also visit our Facebook group of investors, which is called Master Mynd. It’s a real estate investors’ club, where you can exchange ideas with other owners. Check out our weekly podcast as well, called The Myndful Investor. We invite leaders in real estate and property management to talk about their success and, more importantly, their failures. There’s a lot to learn from this relatable content.

READ POST

Sacramento Investors and Landlords: What Should You Do to Prepare for a Global Emergency?

https://youtu.be/XRKJSuPJ_TY

If you’re an investor and you own rental property in Sacramento or the surrounding area, you may be wondering how you can prepare for an emergency. If there’s a disaster, whether it’s local or global, you want to be prepared. Steve Rozenberg, VP of Investor Education at Mynd, sat down with Dan Hines, Mynd's Regional Director in the Sacramento Area, to discuss some of the things owners and investors in the area should be thinking about.

To read more, go to:

Mynd Website

Mynd Facebook Page

Mastermynd Facebook Group

Mynd Instagram

Linkedin

READ POST

Sacramento Renters: How to Prepare for Emergency Situations

https://youtu.be/JhxIdLs77BU

If you are a resident renting a property in Sacramento, and you’re trying to prepare for potential emergencies, there are a few critical steps you can take. When you’re in the middle of an emergency, you can feel emotional and panicked. That’s natural. But with proper planning, you can make sure that the negative impact of an emergency is lower than what it would be without having a plan in place. Today, Steve Rozenberg, VP of Investor Education at Mynd, is sharing some of the things you should think about as you put together your emergency plan.

To read more, go to:

Mynd Website

Mynd Facebook Page

Mastermynd Facebook Group

Mynd Instagram

Linkedin

READ POST

Situation Room: How is the Coronavirus Impacting Real Estate?

https://youtu.be/5m7v86fdoXA

Mynd Property Management is dedicated to your health and safety during this global crisis. Steve Rozenberg (), Alex Osenenko () and Ali Nazar() discuss how the coronavirus is impacting real estate.

Mynd Website

Mynd Facebook Page

Mastermynd Facebook Group

Mynd Instagram

Linkedin

READ POST

Coronavirus Crash? Recession Do's and Don'ts | Rookie Podcast 03

It's a new week... and, seemingly, a new world. So -- we've got a new episode for you... with a twist on our usual format.

On Tuesday, March 17, Ashley and Felipe sat down with Joe Asamoah and Steve Rozenberg, VP of Investor Education at Mynd Property Management, to discuss the topic on everyone's mind: the COVID-19 outbreak and its inevitable impact on real estate investors. Think of it as a virtual coaching session with two seasoned, successful investors who have withstood several downturns and lived to tell about it.

Joe and Steve have a combined 50 years of experience under their belts, so they offer a valuable perspective to younger or less experienced investors -- our fearless co-hosts included -- who haven't yet seen a full real estate cycle. This episode covers it all -- from the mindset successful investors use to accelerate wealth-building through downswings, to the shifting competition you're likely to face, to how to whip your finances into shape and secure lines of credit BEFORE you need them.

Plus -- Joe breaks down how renting to Section 8 voucher holders can be a lifeline during a recession and Steve shares his tips for designing systems and checklists so you can think clearly, even when you're steering into economic headwinds. This episode is GOLD for investors on the hunt for their first, second, or third deal in 2020.

Stay safe, everyone!

-Mynd Website

-Mynd Facebook Page

-Mastermynd Facebook Group

-Mynd Instagram

-Linkedin

READ POST

Rent Moratorium and Evictions - What Landlords Need to Know and Consider

https://youtu.be/TY1PoE8buwo

Times are changing & landlords / real estate investors need to know what's happening rent moratorium and evictions. In this video, real estate investor Steve Rozenberg, VP of Investor Education at Mynd, breaks down what we know today regarding rent moratorium and shares advice for landlords who do not know what to do during this troubling time.

Mynd Website

Mynd Facebook Page

Mastermynd Facebook Group

Mynd Instagram

Linkedin

READ POST

Simple Advice for Landlords to Fight Coronavirus Issues

https://youtu.be/F_SqcoHb8GI

Steve Rozenberg, a real estate investor, air pilot, and VP of Investor Education at Mynd, shares some simple, yet much-needed advice to landlords and investors to help you get through the coronavirus outbreak.

Mynd Website

Mynd Facebook Page

Mastermynd Facebook Group

Mynd Instagram

Linkedin

READ POST

What Landlords Should Do to Combat COVID-19 | Dallas Landlord Advice

We have a serious situation now throughout the country and all over the world with the spread of the coronavirus, or COVID-19.There’s a lot of uncertainty.If you’re a rental property owner in Dallas, there’s a lot you need to think about in terms of information and accessing government resources. We’re talking today about what you should do and how you can help yourself, your investment property, and your residents.

Remain Calm and Professional

First, don’t panic. There’s a lot of panic going on throughout the country and across the globe, and while that panic is understandable, it’s not going to help you solve any problems or make any preparations. So, remember that you’re running a business, and even if you’re nervous and worried, you have to think rationally and respond only to what you can control. Leave the things you cannot control to other people.

Focus on Local Sources and Resources

One of the things that’s especially alarming as this emergency situation grows worse is the amount of wrong information that’s out there. The information Americans are required to consume every day can be overwhelming, especially when not all of it is factual.Don’t get drawn into sensationalized stories that don’t actually have a lot of meaning to the current situation.Focus on the sources and the resources you can trust. The Centers for Disease Control () is a great place to start, and you can check their website for the latest information and for local resources that might be of value to you.Make sure you know how to reach your city and county health departments and government agencies as well. Local municipalities may be your best shot at getting good information and direction. During such a confusing time, many states, counties, and cities are following their own procedures and issuing their own recommendations and requirements. If you’re in North Dallas and thinking about your Dallas rental property, you don’t have to spend a lot of time focusing on what’s going on in New York or Chicago. Pay attention to your local news, needs, and resources.

Find Your Local Hospitals and Health Centers

One thing that everybody needs to come to terms with is the fact that we don’t really know what’s going to happen with this virus or to our economy. People are great at making predictions, but we don’t actually know if we’re at the beginning, middle, or end of the pandemic’s worst days. This could all be gone in a month or we could be further into the pandemic in a month. We don’t know.Pay attention to what your local authorities are telling you. Make sure you know how to reach and where to find your local fire department and police station. Know where your local hospital or urgent care center is. We recommend you put a pin in those locations when you Google the information on your phone. If you need a test or you start to feel sick, you’ll want to know where to go for immediate testing and treatment.This is a fluid situation, but it’s a good idea to act and plan based on the information you have.

Choose the Information You Consume

Choose the Information You Consume

In Texas, it’s just been announced that restaurants and bars are closing. This means that small businesses have to be creative in how they serve the needs of their customers. While restaurants may be closed for in-person dining, they are still providing take-out and a lot of places are even delivering. Grocery stores are restricting their hours in the morning so senior citizens can shop safely and with less risk of contracting the virus.Pay attention to what’s going on in your state, your city, and even your neighborhood. You have to know what you’re doing, and you have to keep up with any changes or requirements.The news is usually a good source of information, but realize that not everything you hear can be trusted. Be careful about what you’re listening to and who you’re lending credibility to. Make sure you’re getting factual information. You don’t want to hear anyone reporting based on opinions or emotion or panic. It can drive you to make decisions that might not be in your best interests.Be especially careful of social media. Most of us love checking our Facebook feeds and our Instagram and Twitter posts, but on social media, you’re not always getting the best information. It’s become more of a gossip mill, especially since this coronavirus really took hold.Follow information that comes directly from a reliable and credible source. Don’t look at social media all day long. It will make you anxious and possibly contribute to the spread of disinformation.

Dallas is Region 6 for the Federal Government

One thing you should know as a Dallas rental property owner is that Dallas is under the Region 6 jurisdiction for the federal government. So when you’re looking up information from the local or you are visiting health.gov or any of the federal websites, Dallas and most of north Texas falls under Region 6. You’ll get a lot of information on those sites that may pertain directly to you and how you’re managing your rental property during this time of crisis.As we have said, county and municipal resources will be your best, but you want to know what the federal programs are for you as well.

Emergency Contacts for Residents and Owners

Emergency Contacts for Residents and Owners

Make sure your emergency contact list is updated and accurate. If you’re a resident, you should have phone numbers for family members who can be reached if necessary. If you’re living with roommates, make sure everyone has updated contact information. Our resident services team is prepared to collect that information from you.Owners should also have emergency contact information on file with us, and we’ll especially need a back-up contact in case we can’t reach you and we need to make a decision or get into the property.If you want some more information on how to respond to the coronavirus and what you should do to protect your property and your residents, contact us at Mynd Property Management. We have resources that may be helpful to rental property owners in Dallas or the North Texas area. Whether you’re an owner or a resident, please contact us if you need assistance of any kind.

READ POST

How Should Rental Property Owners Prepare for a Local Emergency in Dallas?

If you own a rental property in Dallas, what can you do to prepare for a local emergency?We’re talking about emergency planning and preparation today, and it’s especially important as people in Dallas and throughout the country deal with the current emergency, which is a virus pandemic.

Put Together an Action Plan

The best way to approach any local Dallas emergency is to have an action plan. A lot of the owners we work with at Mynd Property Management are not in Dallas. They might not even be in Texas. So, we need to be prepared for out-of-state owners and investors who are desperate to keep in touch and follow up on how their property and their residents are faring during any emergency.Action plans can help you stay focused, organized, and prepared. Depending on the emergency, it will include any number of things. Maybe it means finding out who the government resources are at agencies that can help you. If you need to relocate a resident, you’ll want to know how to find the best options and where to go when you need help.

Prepare for Resident Relocation

If the emergency that occurs makes your Dallas rental property inhabitable, you’ll need to prepare to move your residents out of the home. This may be complicated, because most emergencies will attract first responders and other agents from outside of the area, and they’re going to take up a lot of the temporary housing and hotel rooms. If a tornado takes down your house and the entire city of Dallas is impacted, relocating your resident is not going to be as easy as booking a room at the Motel 6 or the Sheraton.Be prepared for who you have to move. You’ll want to confirm the number of people living in the home. The action plan you put together will differ depending on whether you’re moving one person or an entire family. Is there a pet? Does someone have a disability that needs to be considered? You really need to engage with your resident so you can relocate them into the temporary housing that’s going to be best for them. You may relocate them for one day or one week. Maybe it will be longer. Have a plan, but make sure you’re flexible. That plan may need to change based on how the disaster impacts you, your community, and the recovery efforts.

Update Your Insurance Policy

When there’s an emergency that impacts your rental property, you’re going to need to know that your insurance policy is up to date and that you’re covered. Don’t wait for the emergency to happen before you find out whether you’re protected against that particular type of loss. Make it a habit to check in with your insurance agent regularly.There are a lot of different policies out there. You need to be sure your asset is covered, and you need to know what else you can count on. Maybe your landlord policy covers relocation assistance for your residents and loss of rent.Insurance is important, and you shouldn’t spend a lot of time thinking about how to save money by cutting corners on insurance policies. If the emergency in question happens to be a hail storm and you have huge holes in your roof from hail, you don’t want to find out after the fact that your policy doesn’t cover hail.

Provide Dallas Property Managers with Contact Information

When there’s an emergency, your property management company is going to need to get in touch with you. They’ll want to be in regular contact, especially if your property and your residents are seriously impacted. Make sure we have the right contact information for you.A secondary contact is also important. If you’re out of state or out of the country, you’re going to want to provide your property manager with multiple people who can get in touch with you or make decisions on your behalf. Communication is always important, and it’s especially critical during emergencies.

Prepare Financially with a Reserve

Emergencies can have an immediate physical impact, and then they can ripple through the community and the economy to have an additional impact. This is happening right now with the coronavirus. A lot of Dallas residents can’t work, and that means they can’t pay rent.You aren’t necessarily going to evict the residents in need during an emergency that affects the entire world, but you need to be prepared to make important decisions. If your residents lose their job, what will you do? Moratoriums on evictions and mortgage payments, if they become part of the response, will only last so long.If you don’t have the funds to sustain a few months of missing rental payments, you’re going to experience even more anxiety. These are the things you really need to think about when you’re putting your action plan together. A strong savings or reserve will help you survive financially until the emergency is under control. You don’t want to be in a position where rent isn’t coming in, but if that actually happens, make sure you have the financial security to come through it.There are so many discussions about what an assistance package or relief package might look like for people who have been furloughed or laid off. We don’t know what they will do or how we will be expected to handle it as landlords.We don’t always know what an emergency will look like. This is why you have to feel prepared.Whether it’s a virus or a tornado or a hurricane or a hail storm, know what steps you will take to address any needs that you, your property, or your resident may have. This might be a relocation, a physical property repair, or an interruption in cash flow. None of this is what we want, but it’s a reality that you may have to deal with.If you’d like to learn a little bit more about how to handle an emergency, please contact us at Mynd Property Management. We would be happy to be your resource and expert partner when it comes to Dallas property management.

READ POST